Date of Graduation

Spring 5-21-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in International Studies (MAIS)

First Advisor

John Zarobell


The purpose of this study is to understand and evaluate the manner in which the NGO sector surpasses state led efforts related to improving knowledge about reproductive health within rural areas in Guatemala. This research focuses on using methodologies from four Adolescent Youth Health Programs within the region of Lake Atitlan as well as state run institutions such as schools and health centers.

More specifically, this case study seeks to analyze the current gaps sexual and reproductive health programming in rural indigenous towns in the Sololá department of Guatemala. It compares four private NGO institutions with two public organizations, specifically the ministry of health and ministry of education, through qualitative interviews. Emergent themes taken from a total of 18 interviews include the importance of comprehensive program structure, community involvement, interinstitutional cooperation, capacity building, and adequate funding models. This research argues that giving greater importance to sexual and reproductive health programming is a meaningful start to shifting violence in indigenous communities, especially towards women.